Protest Music

Intro Journal discussion questions:
-What does it mean to protest something?
-Why (in our nation’s history and today) would artists
choose to write protest music?
-Can you think of any protest songs/artists/issues?
***3 sentences!!***
 Spinoff of folk-rock genre music.
 Cry out against inequality, poverty and war,
support of workers, civil and human rights.
 Helps people realize they're not alone in
feelings that are against certain injustices.
 Sometimes called ‘rebelling’ a certain
 Pete Seeger
 His parents were both musicians
 Pre-World War II songs
 Known as a musician, labor activist, environmentalist,
and peace advocate
Born May 3, 1919 in New York
Spent time in the South during the Civil Rights marches
in the 60’s – when he wrote “We Shall Overcome”
Plays the banjo
His work has inspired musicians today like the Dixie
Chicks and Bruce Springsteen
 Big during the 40’s and early 50’s
 Still playing music today
 Quote: “Participation! It’s what all of my work has
been about”
 Was not always popular since he took different
stances on issues
 Earned several awards for his music
 Called a “saint” by Bob Dylan
 Bob Dylan
 Early 1960’s
 Known as a poet and musician
 Became popular during folk music genre
 Sang about topical issues / current events: Vietnam war
(song: Blowin’ in the Wind) and nuclear bungling of
Cuban Missile Crisis (song: A Hard Rain’s Gonna Fall)
 Rebelled against power
 Abandoned the protest music in 1965 – adopted
electrically amplified instruments and began creating
rock and roll music.
 Born Robert Allen Zimmerman – May 24, 1941 –
Duluth, MN
 Best known music/works come from the 60’s
 Lyrics incorporated politics, philosophy and literary
influences – defied pop music and attracted
other/more listeners during this time
 One of the most influential musicians and songwriters
in American culture
 Brainstorm artists/songs/ideas that have to do with
today’s protest music
 Ideas:
 Greenday
 9/11 tragedy
 Outkast – Bombs over Bagdad
 Where Have All The Flowers Gone
 If I Had a Hammer
 Turn! Turn! Turn!
 Blowin’ in the Wind
 We Shall Overcome
 The Times They Are A Changin’
 Learn 360 video –title: Musicals, Musicians, Vietnam War, Indira
Gandhi, and the Six Day War – gives background of this time
PBS – Pete Seeger and Bob Dylan videos
Brainpop – 60s Folk Music – discusses Bob Dylan and Pete
Radio show about Seeger: - all about Bob
Dylan’s songs and the meanings behind them
Bob Dylan news article:
Bob Dylan bio video:
 Group creation of a poem or song about some issue
that concerns you today that you would like to protest.

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